A FEMALE driver has been threatened by a man brandishing a hammer in a disturbing road rage incident near a busy junction.

Dorset Police are appealing for witnesses following the drama, which unfolded on Monday morning at Canford Bottom roundabout, near Ferndown.

The shocked woman, who was approaching the roundabout on the A31 in her black Ford C-MAX car, travelling from Ringwood towards Poole, beeped her horn after becoming agitated at the manner of driving of another motorist in a small black car.

This prompted the driver of the small car to stop 400 yards short of the roundabout, in an attempt police believe was to stop the victim from moving.

He got out of his car wielding a hammer, approached the driver's window and started shouting at her.

Then he jumped back into his car and drove off

No-one was physically injured during the incident.

Police community support investigator Kate Hann, of Dorset Police, said: "I am appealing to anyone who witnessed this incident, or captured it on dashcam, to please contact Dorset Police.

"The victim believes that the driver of a dark-coloured Mercedes who was travelling behind her may have recorded some of the incident on a mobile phone.

"I would ask this driver to please come forward."

Last month police were called to investigate a road rage incident at Fountain car park, High Street, Christchurch, where white powder was allegedly thrown into the face of a man and a teenage girl.

Neither needed medical treatment.

Meanwhile, in June, Dorset Police were called to an incident in Sturminster Newton when a knife was reportedly brandished during an episode of road rage.

Earlier this year a study conducted by automotive data company HPI revealed a quarter of UK drivers have jumped out of their car to abuse another motorist.

Some 23 per cent of men admitted to physically confronting another driver, while 20 per cent of women admitted to purposefully following another vehicle to vent their anger after an incident on the roads.

When it came to the causes of road rage, the study found that being overtaken by another vehicle, tailgating and traffic jams were high on the list.

However, the biggest cause, according to the study, was drivers simply taking out their frustrations after a bad day.

HPI conducted the survey of more than 1,000 drivers aged between 18 and 65.

The Canford Bottom incident took place around 7.20am on Monday, September 2.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police via dorset.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55190138315.